The sun came out for the Indie Spirit Awards on Saturday in Santa Monica in their famed beach tent. “Get Out” won Best Picture, Jordan Peele won Best Director for Directing it. And that was all pretty wild since “Get Out” — a little movie that wound up making millions– came from Universal, a Very Big Studio.
The Spirit Awards are basically rehearsal for the Oscars. Three of the acting winners on Saturday are likely to win Academy Awards today– Frances McDormand, Sam Rockwell, and Allison Janney. Greta Gerwig won Best Screenplay for “Lady Bird,” a signal that she may win today, too.
The documentary winner was “Faces/Places” with Agnes Varda and French artist JR. It’s not really a documentary, but it’s so whimsical and fun it’s like a dessert. This film could very well beat more serious fare at the Oscars.
This year’s Spirit Awards, like last year’s, were hosted by the very funny Nick Kroll and John Mullaney. They shredded Harvey Weinstein, Brett Ratner, and other Hollywood names in the news this past year for personal scandals.
In the tent, which is really a bubble metaphor for Hollywood, the mood was upbeat even though several snubs in the nominations– like Willem Dafoe in “The Florida Project”– were head scratchers. For example, Greta Gerwig wasn’t nominated for Best Director for “Lady Bird” despite this being The Year of the Woman, etc.
But Timothee Chalamet– 22 years old and winner of Best Actor for “Call Me By Your Name” — expressed the naive but charming thought of the Bubble– that there’s a new generation coming. Hollywood will change, and so on. God bless. There’s always a chance.
One thing I noticed is that guests at the Spirit Awards with this “new generation”: they’re dressing more like it’s a business gathering in a hotel ballroom. It used to be everyone wore jeans, it was very relaxed. Now, I couldn’t help but notice all the suits and ties, many women really dressed up. It’s a sign of something– maybe that big studios are releasing “independent” films.
“The Florida Project”
“Get Out” (WINNER)
BEST FIRST FEATURE
(Award given to the director and producer)
“Ingrid Goes West” (WINNER)
JOHN CASSAVETES AWARD – Given to the best feature made for under $500,000. (Award given to the writer, director and producer. Executive Producers are not awarded.)
“A Ghost Story”
“Life and Nothing More” (WINNER)
“Most Beautiful Island”
Sean Baker, “The Florida Project”
Jonas Carpignano, “A Ciambra”
Luca Guadagnino, “Call Me by Your Name”
Jordan Peele, “Get Out” (WINNER)
Benny Safdie, Josh Safdie, “Good Time”
Chloé Zhao, “The Rider”
Greta Gerwig, “Lady Bird” (WINNER)
Azazel Jacobs, “The Lovers”
Martin McDonagh, “Three Billboards Outside Ebbing, Missouri”
Jordan Peele, “Get Out”
Mike White, “Beatriz at Dinner”
BEST FIRST SCREENPLAY
Kris Avedisian, Story By: Kyle Espeleta, Jesse Wakeman, “Donald Cried”
Emily V. Gordon, Kumail Nanjiani, “The Big Sick” (WINNER)
Ingrid Jungermann, “Women Who Kill”
David Branson Smith, Matt Spicer, “Ingrid Goes West”
Thimios Bakatakis, “The Killing of a Sacred Deer”
Elisha Christian, “Columbus”
Hélène Louvart, “Beach Rats”
Sayombhu Mukdeeprom, “Call Me by Your Name” (WINNER)
Joshua James Richards, “The Rider”
Ronald Bronstein, Benny Safdie, “Good Time”
Walter Fasano, “Call Me by Your Name”
Alex O’Flinn, “The Rider”
Gregory Plotkin, “Get Out”
Tatiana S. Riegel, “I, Tonya” (WINNER)
BEST FEMALE LEAD
Salma Hayek, “Beatriz at Dinner”
Frances McDormand, “Three Billboards Outside Ebbing, Missouri” (WINNER)
Margot Robbie, “I, Tonya”
Saoirse Ronan, “Lady Bird”
Shinobu Terajima, “Oh Lucy!”
Regina Williams, “Life and Nothing More”
BEST MALE LEAD
Timothée Chalamet, “Call Me by Your Name” (WINNER)
Harris Dickinson, “Beach Rats”
James Franco, “The Disaster Artist”
Daniel Kaluuya, “Get Out”
Robert Pattinson, “Good Time”
BEST SUPPORTING FEMALE
Holly Hunter, “The Big Sick”
Allison Janney, “I, Tonya” (WINNER)
Laurie Metcalf, “Lady Bird”
Lois Smith, “Marjorie Prime”
Taliah Lennice Webster, “Good Time”
BEST SUPPORTING MALE
Nnamdi Asomugha, “Crown Heights”
Armie Hammer ,”Call Me by Your Name”
Barry Keoghan, “The Killing of a Sacred Deer”
Sam Rockwell, “Three Billboards Outside Ebbing, Missouri” (WINNER)
Benny Safdie, “Good Time”
ROBERT ALTMAN AWARD – Given to one film’s director, casting director and ensemble cast
Director: Dee Rees
Casting Directors: Billy Hopkins, Ashley Ingram
Ensemble Cast: Jonathan Banks, Mary J. Blige, Jason Clarke, Garrett Hedlund, Jason Mitchell, Rob Morgan, Carey Mulligan
BEST DOCUMENTARY (Award given to the director and producer)
‘The Departure,” Lana Wilson
“Faces Places,” directed by Agnés Varda, JR, produced by Rosalie Varda (WINNER)
“Last Men in Aleppo,” directed by Feras Fayyad, produced by Kareem Abeed, Søeren Steen Jespersen, Stefan Kloos
“Motherland,” directed by Ramona S. Diaz, produced by Rey Cuerdo
“Quest,” directed by Jonathan Olshefski, produced by Sabrina Schmidt Gordon
BEST INTERNATIONAL FILM (Award given to the director)
“BPM (Beats Per Minute),” Robin Campillo, France
“A Fantastic Woman,” Sebastián Lelio, Chile (WINNER)
“I Am Not a Witch,” Rungano Nyoni, Zambia
“Lady Macbeth,” William Oldroyd, U.K.
“Loveless,” Andrey Zvyagintsev, Russia
BONNIE AWARD – The inaugural Bonnie Award will recognize a mid-career female director with a $50,000 unrestricted grant, sponsored by American Airlines.
So Yong Kim
Chloé Zhao (WINNER)
JEEP TRUER THAN FICTION AWARD – The 23rd annual Truer Than Fiction Award, funded by the Jeep brand, is presented to an emerging director of non-fiction features who has not yet received significant recognition.
Shevaun Mizrahi, Director of “Distant Constellation”
Jonathan Olshefski, Director of “Quest” (WINNER)
Jeff Unay, Director of “The Cage Fighter”
KIEHL’S SOMEONE TO WATCH AWARD – The 24th annual Someone to Watch Award, funded by Kiehl’s Since 1851, recognizes a talented filmmaker of singular vision who has not yet received appropriate recognition.
Amman Abbasi, Director of “Dayveon”
Justin Chon, Director of “Gook” (WINNER)
Kevin Phillips, Director of “Super Dark Times”
PIAGET PRODUCERS AWARD – The 21st annual Producers Award, funded by Piaget, honors emerging producers who, despite highly limited resources, demonstrate the creativity, tenacity and vision required to produce quality, independent films.
Giulia Caruso & Ki Jin Kim